Whilst driving through Mauritius, you may encounter road works where the traffic is manually controlled by 2 persons at either end, turning stop and go signs instead of traffic lights, police controlling roundabouts, scooters loaded with families of three, pedestrians running across the dual carriage way (motorway), or at night in certain areas of Mauritius, and more so the villages, people playing cards on a table set up in the road's kerb (curb), just to mention a few strange encounters.
Summary of the most important points
You have 4 types of road in Mauritius:
In residential areas and villages you "should" only drive 40 km/h but not always sign posted, yet some roads signs in town or villages are ambiguous indicating 60km/h. On country roads the speed limit is 80 km/h and on the dual carriage way (motorway) it is 110 km/h, t axis have to drive slower.
You should definitely apply defensive driving in Mauritius, below is a video to refresh your memory. Obviously the snow and winter part does not apply. You can apply these tips when you return from your holiday in Mauritius. :) The fog section may apply in the center of island 700 meters above sea level but rare. December to March is the cyclonic period which brings a lot of rain and know what to do when you hydroplane.
Although you are always responsible for the way you operate your vehicle, the one thing you can't control is how other people drive their vehicles. That is why applying the art of defensive driving is so important. In addition to other drivers, it's important to know that defensive driving can also be used in bad weather, car malfunctions, and other hazardous situations.
This video answers the following important questions to help you stay "safer" on the road:
Don't hesitate to comment below if you have some tips to share.
Probably the most challenging if you have never driven on left hand side. The video tutorial below provides skilled and learner drivers with the accurate information for dealing with roundabouts, along with tips and safety routines. We could all benefit watching this tutorial. If we were able to adhere to these rules driving through a roundabout and a little road courtesy on top of that, we would have less traffic jams.
Bicycle riders are allowed to turn right from the left hand lane. When passing each exit, the rider must give way to any vehicle leaving the roundabout from that exit.
The diagram shows how to indicate and give way at roundabouts.
Driving through a roundabout in Mauritius can seem a bit complicated and can be most times, where road signage may be missing. This is where the police takeover and "try" to keep the traffic fluid. Not an easy task. You may ask yourself, why don't they place road signs? Most road signs are made of metal and are often stolen for scrap metal, an ongoing battle to alleviate traffic jams caused by poor signage or road education.
Don't hesitate to comment below if you have some tips to share.
Here are some traffic rules understood by Mauritian drivers and are of common knowledge:
Swipe left (Smart phone).
I am turning right! If arm at 90 degrees with hand pointing left, then I'm turning left.
in a traffic jam
Caution I am changing lane! Generally doesn't work. You have to give other driver a pleading look and most times than not they let you swap lane.
Car which is driving tightly on the kerb side. Basically slowing down all traffic.
I don’t really want drive fast, saving on petrol. Please just overtake me.
Note: Mostly cars that are more than 20 years old or elder inexperienced drivers who have just acquired their license.
Overtake!! Now! You can!
Caution! I am coming! Please stay in your lane because I am overtaking!
at traffic lights
Go! Lights have changed to amber! Probably you know it, but just accelerate. Generally the cars that have more than 2,000 cc. These drivers are more likely to intimidate other drivers.
I had the right of way!! Or you took my priority.
Policeman who give the come on wave, especially during rush hour
Faster please! How else should this traffic jam ever end?
Have a look at our article Driving in Mauritius (Left side) covering statistics, driving environment, driver behaviour, vehicles, more about speed limits, traffic lights, road signs and markings, kerb markings, intersections, pedestrian crossings, railway crossings, dual carriage ways (highways), city driving, rural roads, night driving, parking, oddities with interesting photos. "A picture paints a thousand words".
Except for Port Louis, Rose Hill, Curepipe and Quatre Bornes public parking is free of charge and easily accessed. In these towns parking is only possible with parking coupons. Coupons can be purchased in petrol stations (125 in Mauritius) and major supermarkets. They are valid for either half an hour or one hour and have to be perforated with date and time of parking.It is an offence NOT to perforate parking coupons e.g. you may NOT use a pencil or pen to cross mark arrival time with the intention to reuse the coupon. There are two different parking zone fees and depending on the zone parking is either 10 or 20 Rupees a half hour. Last price hike 2011 .
Counterfeit parking coupons are circulating in Mauritius.The National Transport Authority (NTA) is looking to introduce payment methods used abroad. See this article in French .
Find a list of official coupon resellers . List is provided by the Parking Unit and may not be up to date.
Note: Always park on the left side e.g. the way the traffic is flowing, never on the right side, it is not permitted and you'll get a ticket.
It is just on the outskirt of Port Louis but you would enjoy "free" parking. Walk about 1,500 meters to the center of Port Louis. In summer you would work up a good sweat, not advisable for those that can't cope with the summer heat exceeding 30 degrees Celsius in the shade. You'll find some Mauritians, especially ladies walk with an umbrella as opposed to a parasol. Practical to stay in the shade. You'd think this would be more convenient and generalised in Mauritius or other hot countries.
If you want to rent a car in Mauritius, make sure it is an official car rental service. Official car rentals have yellow license plates.
You can find cheap "illegal" car rentals on the internet at half the price to the branded car rentals. The downside, if you have an accident the insurance won't cover you, notwithstanding you and the car owner are committing a criminal act. In such a situation, you would not be able to leave the country until you go to court.
Check Maki Car Rental for extremely competitive rates and a professional approach.
Note: We have no commercial relationship with this company, just endorsing excellent value for money and service.
By law petrol stations are obliged to open from 06:00 AM to 20:00 PM.
Petrol stations are usually easy to find. Nevertheless there are almost no 24/7 stations so you better refill the tank before going on a night trip.
La Croisette, Pamplemousses, Calebasses, GRNW, Bagatelle, Curepipe and La Preneuse have 24/7 fuel station.
Mauritius has a good bus network, which is spread throughout the country. So most of the locals use the bus to get around Mauritius.
Mauritian buses are in good conditions. Lately, there has been a major improvement in the bus transport sector in Mauritius. Some buses on the island have now automatic doors, free Wi-Fi and air-conditioned.Air-conditioned buses are usually more expensive.
Travelling by bus in Mauritius is becoming more comfortable on main routes, as for the other routes it's a "special adventure" which is to be considered just for the experience. Furthermore, it is the cheapest way of travelling in Mauritius.
If you have a long distance to travel, make sure you have ample time to return. Depending on the region the last buses leave between 18:00 hrs and 20:00 hrs and in some towns even later but not coastal routes.
The fare for one bus ride varies between MUR 10 to 35 . If you have to change bus you need to purchase a new ticket. The ticket can be purchased with the bus controller. Keep your. tickets until you reach your destination.
Signs on the front side of the bus indicates destination. There are timetables for buses, however not "always" reliable.The major bus companies in Mauritius are:
· National Transport Corporation (NTC): (+230) 426 29 38.
· United Bus Service (UBS): (+230) 212 20 26.
· Mauritius Bus Transport (MTB), Long Mountain (Mr. Dhiraj Dosieah): (+230) 245 25 39.
· Triolet Bus Service (TBS): (+230) 261 67 25
· Rose Hill Transport (RHT): (+230) 464 12 21
Mauritius doesn't currently have a railway system... The Mauritius light rail project long awaited should really alleviate traffic congestion.
The Metro Express in Mauritius is currently being constructed and in September 2019 (Phase 1) will be operational from Port Louis to Rose Hill. September 2021 (Phase 2) from Port Louis to Curepipe. The service will span over 26 km.
Statistics | Driving Environment | Driver Behaviour | Vehicles | Speed Limits | Traffic Signals | Road Signs | Road Markings | Kerb Markings | Roundabouts | Intersections | Pedestrian Crossings | Railway Crossings | Highways | City Driving | Rural Roads | Night Driving | Parking | Oddities
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